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Russia: Three Suspects Detained Over Mozdok Suicide Bomb Attack

Mozdok, Russia; 6 August 2003 (RFE/RL) -- Russia's judiciary today said they had detained three suspects in the suicide car bombing that killed 50 people in the North Ossetian city of Mozdok last week. Deputy Prosecutor-General Sergei Fridinsky, who is in Mozdok to supervise the investigation, told the Interfax news agency that two of the suspects have already been put under arrest.

No one has claimed responsibility for the attack, but Russian officials believe armed separatists in neighboring Chechnya of being behind the attack that targeted a Russian military hospital.

President Vladimir Putin has publicly blamed the army leadership for failing to prevent the attack.

The commander of the Mozdok military hospital, Lieutenant Colonel Artur Arakelian, has been detained for questioning over the attack.

Fridinsky today said the officer was suspected of "dereliction of duty."